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It's time for a carbon tax
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2612

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coboardhead wrote:
I was arguing for a deliberate, measured approach to dealing with carbon emissions rather than jumping into a cap and trade right now.


I agree with you. BTW, "commoner" is an old English term used to describe those not of "noble" birth.......most of whom could not read. I included the reference as an colorful historical aside, not as a poke in the ribs.
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coboardhead



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 1927

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the history lesson, your Highness
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2612

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

boggsman1 wrote:
One could argue that we spend $800Billion of taxpayer funds on defense, which keeps oil prices low. That is a subsidy of massive proportion. If we didnt support the Saudis the way we do, I doubt premium would be 3.50 a gallon. Why are there so few SUV's in Europe? Its a massive allocation of resources to fund our driver happy population, so we can all drive home to our palaces in the Xuburbs.


There are fewer gas guzzlers in Europe because gas prices are two to three times higher. The difference is entirely due to taxes. The crude market is global.........the price for crude is the same in Paris, France as in Paris, Illinois. There is little doubt that US efforts to maintain stability in the Middle East has helped to keep crude prices down......that's a subsidy to the global consumer and would act to the detriment of alternate sources of energy if similar subsidies were not available to the producers of those alternatives. However, there have clearly been substantial direct subsidies to ethanol, wind turbine, solar panel producers etc.. How those compare to petroleum subsidies, I don't know.

Incidentally, the US imports most of its hydrocarbons from Canada, Mexico, Venezuela and Nigeria/ Angola. Saudi is the only Mid-East supplier in the top seven or eight.
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boggsman1



Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posts: 3512
Location: at a computer

PostPosted: Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Then maybe we should tax the hell out of gas. reduce our intake(currently 25% of world production), and get some of the monster trucks off the road, which has many benefits. Many economists have often said, you want to use less of something, then tax it!
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5143

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do find the lack of coherence of conservative views irritating. First we get an argument that subsidies are wrong because they encourage misallocation of resources. Absolutely true. In a coherent viewpoint, with support for some Federal incentives in the market place, subsidies should only be used to encourage more desirable behavior, or to encourage innovation. We've done this with housing by making interest deductible. It has gotten completely out of hand, with deductions allowed on second homes and high end housing. But I would change this slowly. While my house is paid off and elimination of the tax deduction wouldn't hurt me, I do see the fundamental unfairness in treating our children in a dramatically different manner. The housing industry has been good to this country, and throwing it under the bus, rather than reforming it to stop the abuses, would be a bad idea.

No doubt some level of cooperation between the oil industry and government is necessary to encourage the risk-taking (unsuccessful drilling) that would rationally develop our resources. But the incentives to the oil industry have gotten completely out of hand and need reform. All of a sudden arguments surface that this will derail the economy, that other energies get subsidies too, that other countries subsidize their energy producers and we have to work with a global market. A grain of truth, but who believes that reform is not needed? And who believes that any form of reform will come from Boehner? I have a bridge for sale for you guys.
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coboardhead



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 1927

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I heard on NPR (here come the rants) on the "Belief" system of global warming presented by a Sociologist. His findings indicated that folks view global warming more like a religion, than a science. No matter what data is presented by scientists, people just won't change their opinion. This was found to be true of "believers" and "non-believers" in his study.

So, a program to reduce carbon emissions is politically a non-starter. Cap and Trade of acid rain was easier cause you could breathe it.

Most folks (except religious zealots) do recognize that, EVENTUALLY, we will run out of fossil fuels.

Promoting the conservation of our natural resources and the reduction of our dependence on imported oil may be more politically palatable and accomplish many of the same goals.

Mac proposed a $.50 a gallon tax (increase?) on gasoline. This, IMO, is too high for the same reasons that he argued a elimination of the interest deduction. This may have some economic shock on folks and industries that cannot adjust quickly to increased fuel costs. Also,it is impossible to legislate at this time.

How about, instead, a systematic phase in of a gasoline tax? This should be along with income tax breaks (and credits). (If I had my way, some would go to debt reduction).
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14050

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coboardhead wrote:
1. No matter what data is presented by scientists, people just won't change their opinion.

2. EVENTUALLY, we will run out of fossil fuels.

3. Promoting the ... reduction of our dependence on imported oil may be more politically palatable and accomplish many of the same goals.

4. How about, instead, a systematic phase in of a gasoline tax? This should be along with income tax breaks (and credits).


1. Most people don't see the data; 10% just hear their chosen politicians, and the other 90% get their news from TV Guide and rap music.

2. In maybe 500 years, as I posted and cited weeks ago.

3. Then why is Obama so hell-bent on imposing policies that increase our dependence on foreign oil while letting second and turd world countries drill in our back yards?

4. I fit right in the fiscal demographic poised to benefit most from that: I make enough to afford higher gasoline prices but not enough to incur higher income taxes (ditto my additional benefit from Obamacare, if that's possible). But I'm still dead set against both because I am absolutely certain that a) both are very harmful to our nation and b) just about anything harmful to our nation harms the world. I guess it's a big flaw of conservatives that we believe our nation is the finest major country on the planet, not the rotten apple for which our sorry president continually apologizes to the world.
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coboardhead



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 1927

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would like to see reasons from a conservative (without substantial ties to big petroleum companies) explain how a tax on gasoline (in place of income tax) would be harmful to our country. Assuming total equal taxes.

Especially, if industries and businesses are protected with tax credits to offset increased fuel and energy prices.

I could see the liberal view that it is a regressive tax.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5143

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coboardhead--actually I said that we should start with a 15 cent tax. I tried to show that the subsidy on security alone was about 50 cents/gallon, but I agree that would shock the economy. I do believe that the total subsidy to petroleum is about $1/gallon.
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coboardhead



Joined: 26 Oct 2009
Posts: 1927

PostPosted: Thu Dec 02, 2010 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apologies

I reread your post. I do agree a .15 tax would/could work. Have to sell it with some sort of other tax break though.
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